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Thursday, October 21, 2021

304 Covid cases caused by Delta subtype, none by Delta Plus: BMC

Of the 376 samples collected, 304 are Delta variant or subtype (not Delta plus), two are Nineteen-A subtype and four samples are Twenty-A subtype, while the remaining 66 are non-significant/local variants.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai |
September 16, 2021 10:48:55 pm
Results of whole-genome sequencing of the first batch of 188 swab samples collected from the city to identify mutations of Sars-CoV-2 were released last month. The BMC on Thursday said that none of the 188 samples from the first phase is Delta Plus. (Express/ Amit Chakravarthy)

The second phase of the genomic surveillance of 376 samples collected from the city to identify mutations of Sars-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, has identified 304 cases of Covid-19 caused by the Delta subtype. However, none of them was caused by the Delta Plus variant, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) said in a statement on Thursday.

Of the 376 samples collected, 304 are Delta variant or subtype (not Delta plus), two are Nineteen-A subtype and four samples are Twenty-A subtype, while the remaining 66 are non-significant/local variants.

Results of whole-genome sequencing of the first batch of 188 swab samples collected from the city to identify mutations of Sars-CoV-2 were released last month. The BMC on Thursday said that none of the 188 samples from the first phase is Delta Plus.

“It is noteworthy that in the samples of both the first and second phases, not a single sample of the sub-type ‘Delta Plus’, which is highly contagious, was found,” said Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani.

A further analysis of the samples collected in the first phase has revealed that of the total 188 samples, 128 were Delta subtype.

Of the 128 Delta subtype, 93 patients were from the city. 54 needed hospitalisation, and 40 were asymptomatic.

The civic body stated that 47 patients were vaccinated against Covid-19. Of these, 20 had taken the first dose and 27 had taken both.

Highlighting the importance of vaccination, BMC said only four fully vaccinated patients needed oxygen supply.

In the contact tracing of the 93 Covid patients, 80 tested positive for Covid-19.

Delta Plus comes from a parent lineage – B.1.617, or the double mutant, which was first detected from samples in Vidarbha, and was considered to be the main reason for the second wave of infections in India.

On August 4, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray inaugurated the city’s first genome sequencing laboratory in Kasturba Hospital. It was the first civic-run healthcare facility in the state to start genome sequencing. The lab can run 384 samples in one round.

With certain relaxations announced across the state, including resumption of local train travel for vaccinated citizens, and daily increase in the Covid 19 cases, the Mumbai civic body appealed to everyone to follow the Covid-19 norms like wearing masks, maintaining a safe distance, regular hand hygiene and avoiding crowds.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the Delta variant has been found in at least 111 countries.

Till now, Maharashtra relied on the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomic Consortia, or INSACOG, a network of 10 laboratories established by the Union Health Ministry in December, for genome sequencing. In addition to the 10 laboratories identified by the Centre to conduct genome sequencing for all states, Maharashtra has signed an MoU with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology to carry out genome sequencing of around 3,600 Covid-19 samples per month.

In Maharashtra, every district sends 100 random samples for genome sequencing as part of a collaboration between the CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology and the state government.

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